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Old 11-11-2012, 12:35 PM   #1
gael33
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Question OS for old Computer?


I have got a 10 year old very basic computer that I want to give to my autistic grandson. At the moment it has no OS installed. I want an easy operating system that will help him hone his learning skills, something that he can easily get online and play the Nick Junior games he is so fond. He is 11 years old, intelligent but with the emotional maturity of an eight year old, so something simple to navigate and definitely nothing that will frustrate him or the PC could end up thrown out of the 1st floor bedroom window. Joking apart, he would really like to get a grip on computing as he is aware that his school uses computers in his next year.
All help and advice appreciated.

Thanks,

gael
 
Old 11-11-2012, 12:40 PM   #2
jefro
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Post the specs of the system is the starting point. About 10 years ago was kind of a good place for linux. Many but not all the systems would run some version. There were still some cd players that had issues with cd-r and cd-rw media even.

Ram amount and cpu speeds and if you know more would help.

Wonder if a kiosk type setup or locked down more would help. Normal distro's for modern systems offer a good common user account where some of the older ones are not locked down by default at all.

Last edited by jefro; 11-11-2012 at 12:43 PM.
 
Old 11-11-2012, 01:46 PM   #3
k3lt01
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I have a few 10 year old Dells here at home (3.2 GhZ, 1 GB RAM) running Debian 6 (Squeeze) Gnome and they are doing great. I also have 1 running Debian Wheezy (Testing) with MATE instead of Gnome and it runs lightning quick.
 
Old 11-11-2012, 03:54 PM   #4
arijspieter
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i'm using Debian Wheezy (which is in my eyes better than squeeze for non-server use cause of better driver support and more recent)
my desktop enviroment is lxde (i installed lxde-core and even removed items from it) and it's a really, really lightweight but probably not as suitable for him as xfce
i think debian + xfce would be a good setup for him. xfce is also very lightweight but in my eyes less suitable for power users (but that should be no problem in your case

hope that helps,
Pieter
 
Old 11-11-2012, 04:53 PM   #5
gael33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arijspieter View Post
i'm using Debian Wheezy (which is in my eyes better than squeeze for non-server use cause of better driver support and more recent)
my desktop enviroment is lxde (i installed lxde-core and even removed items from it) and it's a really, really lightweight but probably not as suitable for him as xfce
i think debian + xfce would be a good setup for him. xfce is also very lightweight but in my eyes less suitable for power users (but that should be no problem in your case

hope that helps,
Pieter
Pieter, Where do I get a copy of Wheezy ... I'll give it a try ?

gael
 
Old 11-11-2012, 06:15 PM   #6
sneakyimp
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Gael33, you've posted here quite a few times so I expect you know your way around a linux box. I don't know much about Wheezy specifically but my experience in the past with Debian has been that the GUI is not included. I hope the other guys will correct me if I'm wrong, but you might have to manually install some kind of GUI.

I recently installed Ubuntu and the installation process was quite professional. I don't know what specs your old machine has, but it might be worth your time to just download Ubuntu and give it a try?
http://www.ubuntu.com/download/desktop
 
Old 11-11-2012, 06:22 PM   #7
snowpine
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Clarifying a couple of points would help us make a recommendation:

1) Hardware specs (especially RAM, CPU, and video card)

2)

Quote:
Originally Posted by gael33 View Post
get online and play the Nick Junior games he is so fond.
Are these games Flash? Because Flash has its own set of system requirements that are distro-independent:

http://www.adobe.com/products/flashp...ech-specs.html
 
Old 11-11-2012, 09:39 PM   #8
frankbell
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Debian, at least the Debians I've used, have installed with GUIs.

It's been so long since I've installed it that I cannot remember the exact steps, but, somewhere during the installation process, there is a dialog for selecting your desired install options. Just make sure that "Desktop" (or whatever term they use) is selected.

With a ten-year old computer, there should be no issue with driver support in Debian Squeeze (stable).

The key issue is the amount of RAMs you have. On a ten-year-old computer, you may have only 256 or 512 MBs, which could necessitate seeking out a light-weight distribution.
 
Old 11-11-2012, 09:48 PM   #9
snowpine
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The Debian installer has a feature called tasksel where you select base system, GUI desktop environment, etc. If you forget to do this at install time, you can invoke tasksel at a later date.

http://wiki.debian.org/tasksel
 
Old 11-12-2012, 01:16 AM   #10
k3lt01
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Download DebianLive and use it off a CD/DVD to see if you like it Gnome and KDE are both DVD sized (1.1 GB) while LXDE and XFCE are CD size I think. I would personally go for the Hybrid.iso in i386 for an older machine. Be aware that these are for Squeeze and this is what is on my older Dells.

After you have that installed, meaning not just using it as a live CD/DVD, you can install many educational packages that may be helpful to your grandson.
 
  


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